March 17, 2015 – Avoiding Diabetes


Anchor lead: Can the drug metformin be used to head off the development of diabetes?  Elizabeth Tracey reports

Prediabetes is the condition where frank diabetes appears likely to develop, with many physicians looking into how to head it off if possible.  Rita Kalyani, a diabetes expert at Johns Hopkins, describes a recent study looking at how to pinpoint risk and whether the very well-known diabetes medicine metformin can help.

Kalyani: They used seven variables to identify people with prediabetes who would be at highest risk for developing diabetes.  The ones that were most predictive were how high their fasting glucose was at baseline, whether they self-reported having a problem with high glucose in the past, and how high their A1c was at baseline.  Those who had the highest risk according to this model most benefited from metformin in delaying the progression to diabetes.  For lifestyle, although benefits were greatest for those in the highest risk category all participants benefited.  :32

Kalyani says the study affirms American Diabetes Association recommendations.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.